Day 3

Original plan:

-visit La Associación Coreana en la Argentina for information, advice and contacts.

-visit Koreatown in Bajo Flores, then maybe Avellaneda and Once.

As I started researching how to get to Koreatown in Bajo Flores, however, I noticed that there were a lot of warnings about how dangerous the area had become. So I thought it would be wise of me to not bring my camera on my first trip, and then maybe thereafter, if it seemed safe enough, I would bring it to take some pictures. I took out all unnecessary items from my bag: credit card, driver’s license, relatively large bills– just in case I might get mugged.

I took the Subté and walked to the office of La Associación Coreana en la Argentina. I was nervous about it would turn out, especially after having been rejected by several newspaper orgs the previous day. Luckily, the organization was very helpful and informative. I asked about the general locations of the Korean churches and neighborhoods, and was warned not go to the Koreatown in Bajo Flores alone.

So, my plan changed to:

-visit La Associación Coreana en la Argentina for information, advice and contacts.

-visit Koreatown in Bajo Flores, then maybe Avellaneda and Once.

I went to Once, looking for Bi Won, a Korean restaurant that most tourists go to– I figured I could go and ask for more Korean restaurants/shops in the barrio. So I left, only to arrive as they were closing shop. I had come at the unfortunate closing hour between lunch and dinner. I asked whom it seemed like the owners of the restaurant (since they were the ones closing up…) if there were any other Korean restaurants or stores in the barrio. They told me that there were only fabric stores owned by Koreans, and gave me the impression that I shouldn’t just go walking into one of the stores, asking for their life stories. They seemed rather mistrustful of newcomers. They advised me to not go to Bajo Flores or Avellaneda, and told me that it was dangerous to even be in Once as a foreigner, a young person, and, of course, as a woman.

Well, then my plan changed to:

-visit La Associación Coreana en la Argentina for information, advice and contacts.

visit Koreatown in Bajo Flores, then maybe Avellaneda and Once.

…at least until I met some other Koreans who could perhaps come with me (?) and/or tell me that it’s safe enough to go.

I don’t know if the restaurant owners were being overly protective of me– because how do you live constantly in a state of fear and worry? But for the time being, I’ll take their advice.

Anyhow, I decided to go to a Korean church on Sunday to see if they can help me out with my project. Hopefully something will work out…

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2 Responses to “Day 3”
  1. Dan says:

    I know you linked to my site about the warning for Barrio Correa here, but don’t read too much into it. As noted, we made the mistake of crossing into the area of the villa, or shantytown area on the other side of the neighborhood – and, it was also written after a particularly bad experience. It still pays to be alert and careful in the area, because they are close together, and I would recommend going with someone who knows the area just to know what parts to stay away from, but overall, you really should be okay there going to the restaurants or shops. As far as Once, I don’t think I’ve ever heard someone warn against going there – certainly during the daytime you’ll be fine – just use the standard cautions of being in any crowded area in a major metropolitan city – the biggest concern there, if any, might be pickpocket or someone grabbing something and running, but that could be true anywhere.

    • jlee18 says:

      Thanks for the advice. Actually, I’ve been going to Avenida Carabobo daily this week (evident in my more recent posts). : )
      No– it’s definitely not as dangerous as I thought. And I’ve been to Once and Avellaneda, and both were fine. I think the elderly Koreans were being a bit over-protective, but I understand their concern.

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